Zafar Makhmudov: Decarbonization of Central Asia – New Opportunities for Sustainable Development

Publication date: 04 November 2022

The 27th Conference of the Parties of the UN Framework Convention on Climate Change in Egypt will identify specific steps that countries will have to take to implement the Paris Agreement.

The 26th Conference of the Parties in Glasgow has become a high-profile event for the global community. The Glasgow Climate Pact adopted by COP-26 is calling on countries to revise their climate commitments by the end of 2022. 

- How impactful was participation of the countries of Central Asia in UNFCCC COP-26?

- COP-26 has become a milestone event for the global community. Critically important arrangements have been made to step-up actions aimed at retaining global temperature growth at 1.5oC, abandoning fossil fuel, implementing climate finance commitments and many more.

For countries of Central Asia, COP-26 has become a historic event in combating climate change. The Central Asia Regional Ecological Center (CAREC) together with the governments of the five countries of the region and international partners created a platform, Central Asian Pavilion, for the first time in history of the international climate summit, which brought together all the five countries of the region. The countries of Central Asia with facilitation and organizational support of CAREC acted as a united front, demonstrated the unity of the region in tackling climate change problems. Yes, each country has its own climate-related specifics and its own challenges. However, climate change is a global and encompassing problem, which affects the overall region. We are proud that we were able to unite to tackle the problem jointly and act as one region at the global climate summit in Glasgow. We were able to draw the attention of the global community to the whole region and open the investment potential not only of one individual country, but rather of the whole region of Central Asia. I believe that during COP-26 the countries of Central Asia were able to enter the international arena as one region. It was in Glasgow, where an arrangement was made to prepare a regional project proposal to be submitted to the Green Climate Fund, in which CAREC would play a consolidating role. 

- If COP-26 marked the unification of the Central Asian region in combating climate change, what will COP-27 mean for the region?

- Yes, having prepared a regional statement on behalf of their governments and NGOs in the region, the countries of Central Asia voiced their consolidated position to the global climate community at COP-26. I would like to emphasize once again that these statements on behalf of the region were first prepared and made at the Global Climate Summit.

What do we expect from COP-27? The main focus in Egypt will be on implementation of the provisions of the Paris Agreement. And, of course, our region will not be left out. CAREC has taken on a coordinating role in preparation of a regional statement on behalf of the governments of the five countries of Central Asia ‘The Voice of Central Asia’. Two regional statements on behalf of the civil society and the youth of Central Asia are also being prepared. We hope that these regional statements will be heard by the global community.  CAREC is preparing a series of side events at COP-27. We would like to inform the global community about a positive approach of the countries of Central Asia to decarbonization. We see new opportunities for sustainable growth, development and wellbeing of future generations in this process.

By Zhanna Husainova 

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